Vendor + Staff Training
Working with your team
Employee & Staff Engagement:
Sustainability initiatives are most successful when the full team has awareness and willingness to see them through. Long-term success depends on investing in your team, sharing education and awareness to motivate team members to be ambassadors and advocates for the mission.
Key points to remember:
It is important to have at least one primary point of contact overseeing the sustainability program and liaising with different departments so that goals are shared.
Establishing an internal Green Team can create a support network and ongoing accountability. This helps evolve your business while offering leadership opportunities to members of your team.
Integrating methods for collective decision-making and tools to receive innovative suggestions from anyone on the team can be wonderful ways to keep sustainability the focus and alignment on top of mind. This also offers an opportunity for the team to be a part of the process and have a sense of ownership over the program as well.
Employee & Staff Training:
Sustainability initiatives are only as successful as the team behind them! Proper training is critical to the long-term and successful implementation of any program. Create the necessary materials, signage, and orientation curriculum as well as reporting and evaluation frameworks to facilitate this training.
Some key components to include in training materials:
Share WHY your business is taking this step towards responsible consumption to value the health of our communities and shared blue planet.
Outline any specific action items employees & staff need to perform.
Include any relevant scripts or template language for communicating these initiatives to guests and clients.
Your team is the primary interface between your business and your guests; equip your team to be ambassadors for the program and to facilitate guest education efforts.
Include relevant training materials in orientation programs to ensure that all new hires are brought up to speed and know how to execute the program. Adopt a train-the-trainer model to empower internal champions and team leads to step into a leadership role, and to pass down the knowledge to their teams and new hires for the longevity of the program.
Working with vendors
Working with Vendors + Suppliers:
When searching for sustainable alternative products, start by asking your existing vendors and suppliers what options they have available. From a procurement perspective, it is often more streamlined to continue working with a consistent supplier rather than engaging with a separate supplier for each item.
Once alternative products are identified, work with your vendors and suppliers to make sure that their sustainable options meet the Blue List requirements. Beware of ‘Greenwashing’ as defined in our Greenwashing Guide
If sustainable options are not available, engage with any vetted sustainable suppliers featured in Oceanic Global’s Blue List of solution providers.
Only host vendors that sell merchandise that meets Oceanic Global’s sustainability guidelines.
Develop your sustainable event guidelines to engage and educate your vendors, or any third parties around your sustainability mission. Always work with locally available solution providers where possible.
Guidelines should include, but are not limited to:
Share your sustainability goals, and share why this is important to your community
Best practices for foodservice operations
Waste management plan
If your current vendor does not have a suitable alternative, collaborate with them to create a new product or line that meets the Blue List requirements. Start the ripple effect: if your vendor creates new sustainable offerings, this will catalyze scalable behaviour change and help shift the market towards responsible consumption.
Food & Beverage Vendors
For venues serving food with an on-site kitchen:
Please refer to details for both FOH and BOH operations in the Blue Standard: Restaurant Guide.
For events with external F+B vendors such as pop-ups, sponsor activations, food trucks, etc. – Share a customized Blue – F+B Vendor Guide, which the Oceanic Global team can create and adjust to feature local vendors and communicate your sustainability ethos for the event.
Share this well in advance and engage your vendors directly to ensure they understand the requirements of activating at your event. If possible, enforce the sustainability requirements by only inviting back vendors that were able to comply to provide incentives.
Another option is to purchase standardized items such as straws, utensils or take away containers to provide the vendors with if budget allows. In this case, ask vendors not to bring any of the above and have them collect materials when they load in.
Beverages: Choosing your liquor and beverage partners that have existing sustainability initiatives and give-back programs.
Oceanic Global can work with your business to develop sustainability guidelines for external vendors and suppliers if this is of interest. Click here.
Working with your Sponsors
From the outset, your sponsors can help you achieve your sustainability goals. Engage them from the initial planning stages of the event and ideally select your sponsors based on their alignment with your goals.
Create a manifesto for the event, production company or venue outlining sustainability standards, including a requirement to find only aligned sponsors that all staff (and future staff) can refer to when securing partnerships or sponsorships.
Choose sponsors who align with your values. Whether they have made public sustainability commitments and are living up to them, or if they are in an industry providing solutions to environmental challenges, there are many potential sponsors for your event who can enhance your sustainability goals.
Ensure that all gifts, giveaways, and product donations provided by your sponsors are plastic-free and are shipped in plastic-free packaging.
Work with your sponsors to ensure that their on-site activation also follows the sustainability guidelines in place for the wider event – vet product content, materials and packaging to ensure that it aligns with the ethos of the event.